The historical city of Varanasi needs a complete, modern makeover and "it is my dream" to achieve this, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said on Sunday.
"Earlier governments did only tidbits (of development work) for Banaras with an eye on short-term electoral gains. But these tidbits won't help Banaras. The city needs a complete, modern makeover and it is my dream to turn this city into a modern world-class city," said Modi, addressing a huge gathering at Mahatma Gandhi Kashi Vidyapeeth here at the conclusion of his road show.
Modi said people of Varanasi can make it the city the world imagines it to be “only if some impediments are removed”.
He said that if earlier governments had given proper attention, Kashi (another older name for Varanasi) could have become an attraction for the world.
"People would have yearned to visit Varanasi at least once," he said.
Singing paeans to the city, Modi said Varanasi is older than history and traditions, proverbs and maxims.
"Varanasi is not a city, it is a living heritage. Every Indian considers Varanasi as his own," he said.
Second Day of Varanasi Rally
Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Sunday resumed the second leg of his mega roadshow in this Uttar Pradesh temple town as a large crowd of supporters and BJP workers eagerly awaited him.
The Prime Minister first flew to the Police Lines in a special Indian Air Force chopper from the airport and made way in his bullet-proof car in a convoy to the Pandeypur area, from where his second leg of road show was to commence.
The 5-km road show would be from Police Lines to Kashi Vidyapeeth.
A number of local Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leaders greeted Modi at the helipad and presented him bouquets.
Thousands of people were lined up along the routes of Modi's road show and the enthusiastic crowds occasionally broke into 'Modi, Modi' chants.
Varanasi is also Modi's parliamentary constituency.